The federal government is investigating the Chicago Public Schools (CPS) system, although the reason behind the probe is unknown.
"Yesterday the Board of Education was made aware that federal authorities are investigating a matter at CPS and have requested interviews with several employees," reads a statement from Chicago Board of Education President David Vitale. "We take any allegation of misconduct seriously, and we are fully cooperating with investigators who requested that we not discuss any specifics regarding the ongoing investigation."
No other information is readily available on this investigation. Stay tuned.
UPDATE 1 (6:38 p.m.): A federal grand jury is reportedly looking into a $20 million no-bid contract that a Wilmette company was granted by CPS. The probe is also investigating the role CPS CEO Barbara Byrd-Bennett may have had in the deal with SUPES Academy as she was a previous employee of the company, which trains school principals. The deal is the largest no-bid contract made by the district in a number of years.
The city of Chicago's inspector general looked into the contract after Catalyst Chicago reported on the CEO's relationship with SUPES. The company employed Byrd-Bennett as a coach before she was brought on as CPS CEO.
"I don't even know who they're looking at. It's a CPS matter," Mayor Rahm Emanuel told reporters after the city council meeting Wednesday. "The federal authorities that are investigating don't share a lot while they have an active investigation. So, I'm as eager as you are for answers to questions. [But] I'm not the person that can provide them at this moment."
Byrd-Bennett's CPS contract is set to expire in June.